Please click here for the GCSE Homework Overview document
Across the Academy, subjects will be using Knowledge Organisers to replace previous homework strategies and the following information explains this in more depth.
What is a knowledge organiser?
A knowledge organiser is a set of key facts or information that students need to know and be able to recall in order to master a unit or topic. Typically, an organiser fits onto one page of A4, which helps students to visualise the layout of the page, which in turn helps them to memorise the information better. An example is attached to this letter.
Why are we moving to knowledge organisers?
Research suggests that equipping students with the skills to be able to learn, retain and recall knowledge is key to the examination success. The newly reformed GCSEs and BTECs are more rigorous and increasingly challenging with an increase in the number of examinations students will sit. This puts increasing pressure on our students to know and retain even more information for longer. The secret to success is to regularly revisit the knowledge to be learned. This helps transfer the knowledge from the short-term memory to the long term memory. This not only helps to make ‘learning stick’ but it also frees up our short-term memory for day to day learning and experiences. To this end, we are introducing Knowledge Organisers as part of our home learning strategy.
What does this mean for my child?
You child will be given a set of knowledge organisers in an A4 folder and a home learning exercise book with a timetable attached to it. This timetable will indicate clearly which subjects will be studied on which night. Teachers will clearly indicate what the student is to do for their home learning each evening and will then follow this up with a short test to check your child’s learning.
Your child’s form tutor will daily check the home learning books to ensure the learning is being completed and support with learning strategies to maximise your child’s potential. Rewards will be given to those who complete this home learning each day by your child’s form tutor. Students who do not complete their home learning will also receive a sanction which will be communicated with you via Class Charts. If your child does not complete their home learning twice in a week, they will receive an after school detention which will be held on Wednesday evenings. This will be communicated home to parents should your child receive one.
In order to transport home learning books to and from school each day, your son/daughter must bring a bag with them big enough to fit an A4 folder in.
What can I do as a parent/carer to help my child with their home learning?
Most homework set will be linked to all or some aspects of the organiser. This might range from learning key words, spellings or remembering dates and definitions. Here are some strategies that might help you to support your child’s learning:
- Ensure your child has a quiet environment in which to complete their home learning
- Read through the organiser with your son/daughter – if you do not understand the content then ask them to explain it to you – ‘teaching’ you helps them to reinforce their learning.
- Test them regularly on the spellings of key words until they are perfect. Make a note of the ones they get wrong.
- Test them about their knowledge.
If you have any queries about home learning please contact your child’s form tutor in the first instance. We look forward to seeing the impact this strategy will have on your child’s progress.